Olympian Greg Rutherford shares his top tips on sleep
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Of the clocks going forward Darren says: “The hour we technically lose in this transition can have a dramatic effect on our bodies and wellbeing the following day.
“Some people may be left feeling sluggish, lethargic and experiencing low moods.”
According to Darren, this is to do with something known as the circadian rhythm: “The circadian rhythm is very susceptible to chance, which is why we tend to get things such as jet lag when change different time zones or lack sleep.
“This has a profound effect on the body’s ability to function properly.”
As a result: “The body needs a little bit of time to readjust and it can sometimes make us feel very strange, however, there are changes that can be made to avoid these unpleasant feelings when the clocks change.”
Darren has four main tips for making it through this brief transition period.
First of all he recommends people trying: “to go to bed about 25 minutes earlier for four nights in the lead up to the clocks chancing. That way, you avoid feeling slugging, tired, and feeling like you need a power nap halfway through the afternoon.”
His second tip is to: “Snack well. Fighting fatigue is all about your sleep and nutrition also plays a part in your physical alertness.”
As well as getting to sleep earlier and snacking well, Darren also recommends avoiding the consumption of alcohol two days before the clocks go forward.
The reason for this is alcohol can result in a poor night’s sleep.
Darren’s final tip relates to exercise.
He says: “Exercise earlier than later to release necessary endorphins. This will give you a more positive outlook before you start your busy routine and help combat your sluggishness.”
Away from the clocks going forward, the NHS has a number of tips to help people fall asleep.
These include sleeping at regular times: “It is important to try and wake up at the same time every day.
“While it may seem like a good idea to try to catch up on sleep after a bad night, doing so on a regular basis can also disrupt your sleep routine.”
Other tips from the NHS include making sure a person winds down psychologically in preparation for bed, making sure a bedroom is sleep friendly, and potentially the creation of a sleep diary.
On what constitutes a sleep friendly bedroom the NHS said: “Your bedroom should be a relaxing environment.
“Experts claim there’s a strong association in people’s minds between sleep and the bedroom.”
It is recommended that the bedroom remains dark, quiet, tidy and at a temperature ranging from 18 to 24 degrees.
For more information on sleep tips contact the NHS or consult your GP if you’re struggling to sleep.
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